Australia's celebration of Spring, Floriade Canberra, 2019

September 14, 2019 / By Rosie Stevens

Did you know Floriade has been happening annually in Canberra for over 20 years and is based on the  world famous 'Keukenhof' garden in The Netherlands?  

With over one million blooms on display this year, and offering so much more than just a flower show, Floriade is now one of the ACT's most popular and iconic events. So whether you've never been before, or are a regular, here are my top picks of events, entertainment, recreational activities and more not to be missed on the 2019 program. 

Floriade Garden Tours
If you’re keen to maximise your Floriade experience and really soak in the beauty of the displays, why not book yourself into a Floriade Garden Walking Tour? The daily tours are run by one of Floriade’s Gardening team, and they look at what it takes to produce the displays, what types of flowers are used and a whole lot more.

Floriade in the suburbs
Can’t get to Commonwealth Park to witness the show? No problem—Floriade is making its way into the suburbs this year; specifically to Belconnen, Gungahlin, Tuggeranong, Woden and Molonglo. 

Each Saturday throughout the festival, the ‘burbs will become home to live music, food, drinks and a whole heap of family entertainment including crafts, bouncy castles and face painting between 12.00 and 3.00 pm. Miss it, miss out!

As integral a part of Floriade as the blooms themselves, NightFest is a true highlight in Canberra’s events calendar. From the 3rd to the 6th of October, the floral displays are transformed into a veritable playground of colour, illuminations, live music and after-dark entertainment.

Thursday to Saturday nights feature live music from the likes of The Veronicas, Electric Fields, Los Chavos, The Baker Boys and Mitch Tambo. On Sunday night, an esteemed cohort of comedians will take to the stage for a night of belly-clutching laughs; including Nina Oyama, Anthony Tomic, Guy Montgomery, Uzila Carlson, Becky Lucas, Sam Taunton and more. 

Foodie favourites and interactive displays plus the huge range of live performers ensure a memorable experience for all, making NightFest an absolute must on your Floriade to-do list.

DreamWorks characters at Floriade
The awe-inspiring showcase of DreamWorks Animation: The Exhibition – Journey from Sketch to Screen will be arriving at the National Museum of Australia from 12 September, and to mark the occasion, some of the most iconic DreamWorks characters will be visiting every weekend at Floriade to celebrate. 

Shrek, Po and the Trolls will all be in attendance, offering attendees the chance to explore the fantasy worlds brought to life by DreamWorks’ artists and creatives.

Veterans Day
On September 27th, a veteran-themed day is taking place at Floriade, in recognition of Canberra’s veteran’s and their families. A War Widows Association marquee will be in action from September 27 to 29, where visitors can contribute to their poppy wall and make origami doves.

Dogs Day Out
For one day only, on Sunday 13th October, visitors can soak up the beauty of the festival in the esteemed company of their four-legged pals! On this day only, all pups, big and small, are invited to explore Floriade’s unique offering of speciality stores just for dogs, lots of extra doggie activities, breed group photos and more. If you're a pawrent, put the date in your diary now!

The Very Hungry Caterpillar is 50
In celebration of the 50th anniversary of the childhood favourite that is Eric Carle’s book, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, Floriade are hosting a story-telling of this much-loved book, complete with other hands on activities on the 19th September and 3rd October.

Yoga at Floriade
If you’re in the mood for a little flexible flow amongst the fresh air and flowers, don’t miss Flourish Yoga’s Vinyasa sessions in the Floriade grounds, on Sunday 15th and Sunday 22nd September.

In amongst the already diverse program of events at Floriade sits a plethora of activities and workshops—covering everything from permaculture and managing household waste to macramé, flower posy creation and making beeswax wraps. Some of the events are free and some incur a cost; but the program caters to a huge range of tastes and interests, and they’re a great way to get yourself into the Floriade spirit.

Got little ones that might like to embrace all-things Floriade as well? Why not take a look at the Kidzklub offering—providing Canberra’s younger generations the chance to try new skills; such as working with coloured clay, pot painting or seed planting. Each workshop is guaranteed to ignite new interests and FYI, there’s the chance to make a Mr. Potato Head with sprouting hair—so miss it at your peril!

Where: Commonwealth Park, Canberra
When: 14th September to 13th October 2019, 9.30am - 5.30pm
Entry: FREE, although certain events are ticketed and incur a cost.

We think you should know: The Weekender's travel guides are independently written by real travellers. We do not receive any money from, or have a sponsorship arrangement with, any of the entities listed in, or referred to in this article.

So much more to explore - Canberra